Act fast against mining firms: Tapal Ganesh

Act fast against mining firms: Tapal Ganesh

 Mining baron Tapal Ganesh demanded on Wednesday that action should be taken against all mining companies named in the 2011 report of former Lokayukta Justice Santosh Hegde.

The companies have been accused of unauthorisedly transporting iron ore worth Rs 1,849 crore.

Officials of the department concerned say that the related files are with Chief Minister Siddaramaiah. Ganesh said that the mining firms had defaulted in payment of royalty amounting to crores of rupees to the government. He demanded that royalty dues should now be collected along with penalty.

The government has forgotten the recommendation in the report that contractors and government staffers who are responsible should also be penalised, Ganesh said. The chief minister had gone back on his promise to set up a fast-track court for illegal mining cases, he said, adding that he was being soft on leaders who had indulged in illegal mining and who were now in the Opposition.

He said no action had been taken against Mehboob Transport company, which is on the inter-state border and is owned by Congress leader Abdul Wahab. He said  a proper demarcation of the inter-state border, as recommended by the Lokayukta report, had not taken place.

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